Cultivora's 5 Top Picks for Snowbombing
Photo: Snowbombing 2012, Courtesy of Snowbombing
Mayrhofen, Austria -- in a few days, Mayrhofen will be bustling once again. This alpine town in Tyrol is a tourist hotspot year-round, but there is always a surge in activity during one week in the spring, when boarders, bikini babes, and everyone else looking to have a memorable experience convene for the world’s preeminent electronic music and winter sports festival: Snowbombing.
In a time where so many festivals have become more about the destination or the experience than about the music, here is an event that truly marries its unorthodox setting and unique experiences (e.g., wild "fancy dress" themed parties, igloo raves) with a truly killer lineup. For 2013, Snowbombing delivers, featuring Kasabian, Katy B, Above & Beyond, Disclosure, and more as the live headliners, along with DJ sets from Carl Cox, Seth Troxler, Skream, Maceo Plex, and Scuba. As the festival is especially popular with travelers from England, it is no surprise that the country’s musicians are also well represented, and Snowbombing has picked the cream of the crop: think Eats Everything, Boddika, Hot Since 82, Bicep, Huxley, Subb-an, Midland, Dusky, and more.
For any curious ‘bombers out there, here are five artists that we are highly recommend.
Gingy & BordelloDespite being associated with Montreal’s house-heavy Turbo Recordings, this London, Ontario-bred and Toronto-based duo shakes thing up with a different sound, sometimes leaning towards the techier side of house, but predominantly it is just really excellent techno. Don’t be fooled by their apparent youth, these are two precocious individuals who know their stuff, and even techno purists will be pleased.
George FitzGeraldShifting things to the London across the pond, here is an artist who has been around for a couple of years and steadily generated a well-deserved buzz. He makes forceful, dynamic music, arresting productions that are a mix of house and garage, with a hint of dubstep for good measure. Beautiful melodies are intricately layered over classically inspired but still fresh-sounding drum patterns, each element enhancing the other so smartly. See this set.
Maxxi SoundsystemHe is a seasoned DJ who knows how to take an audience on a journey. I've seen him in Berlin and in New York, and while these nights were different in the selection of music and the moods that the music created, the constant was the energy that Sam Watts (a.k.a. Maxxi Soundsystem) brings to the decks. The bass hits hard and the tunes are just groovy enough. Prepare to dance, and want to ID every track that he plays, because he’s got an arsenal.
Henrik SchwarzThe prolific German producer crafts deep house tunes with an experimental approach. His tracks feature lush instrumentation as often as memorable vocals, resulting in something that sets him apart from the countless other artists who get lumped into the “deep house” category. As a remixer, he re-imagines everything that he touches, injecting a new energy and flavor into the music while still preserving and showcasing the unique identities of the original tracks. Henrik Schwartz has a way of keeping the audience guessing in the best way possible, because you never know what treats he’ll deliver. Not to be missed.
Anja SchneiderAnja Schneider hardly needs a drawn-out introduction. As the co-founder/owner of mobilee records, she is more than just a savvy businessperson, she is also an artist with exceptional curatorial finesse and a knack for creating stripped-down but not overly minimal tech house tracks. The reason she plays all over the world is because she does it well.
The quality of the bookings aside, Mayrhofen and the surrounding areas do make for excellent skiing and snowboarding, and there is plenty of sightseeing as well. Check out our posts from last year on Ambras Castle (a great day trip) and the Lanserhof resort/medical spa (perfect place to take care of a tired mind and body after the fest), and our comprehensive guide to Snowbombing 2013.
See Also:More Artists Get On Board for Snowbombing
Snowbombing Day Trip: Ambras Castle
Lanserhof: A Post-Snowbombing Relaxation Haven in the Alps